The easiest way to digitize your video tapes is to transfer them to DVDs. You drop off or mail your video tapes and you get back a finished DVD that you can pop into your player right away. Send to grandma, great-aunt, and all of you are reliving the good times all over again.
There are many companies offering this service. Some places let you drop tapes off and some take tapes by mail only. If you do not feel comfortable putting precious video in the mail make sure the drop-off location you choose processes the tapes on-site and not mail it off. As for me, I trust Fedex/UPS and Iâ€™ve not lost a tape yet, touch wood.
Here are the services I have tried:
- Costco ($25). Check Costco Tape Transfer for more information on Costco video transfer services)
- www.playitagainvideo.com (On-site video transfer lab in Newton, MA)
When choosing a service, go through this checklist:
- Do they use professional equipment? Donâ€™t go with hobbyists whose equipment may damage your fragile tapes/film especially if they are over ten years old.
- What tapes do they convert? They should accept all these formats:
- Will the finished DVD play in your DVD player? The higher-end professional equipment produce DVDs that play in 96% of players in the market.
- Do they print the DVD title or do they use stickers. Direct printing is better because if stickers are not applied with 100% symmetry, the DVD may not play smoothly.
- How long before you get your finished DVD?
- Do they guarantee their work? If you don't like your finished DVD, can you get your money back? The reputable outfits say, Absolutely!